In a Nutshell. Mini reviews of movies old and new. No fuss. No spoilers. And often no sleep.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Zatoichi: The Last (2010)

Once again I find myself liking something that I later find out is almost unanimously hated, and wondering if we even watched the same film.
I agree that being blind and holding his sword in a reverse grip doesn't mean pop star Shingo Katori is anything like the Zatoichi we know and love, but that doesn't make ZTL a bad film. Remove the expectation and it’s possible to see director Junji Sakamoto’s work as the beautiful jidaigeki it really is. He's attentive to change, enabling his camera-work to adapt to its target (compare the scenes with and without Tatsuya Nakadai to see what I mean). The lighting, the sets and locations are all exquisite. The story is slow but I was never bored. If it had been marketed as being inspired by the Zatoichi series of films, instead of as a part of it, then I think it would be more openly accepted.

3½ right paths out of 5

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